Competitive Exams: General Studies Economics Land Management
Land figures as Entry 18 in the State list of the Constitution as land, that is to say, right in or over land, land tenures including the relation to landlord and tenant, and the collection of rents; transfer and alienation of agricultural land; land improvement, and agricultural loans; colonization. Entry 45 in the State list is Land revenue, including the assessment and collection of revenue, the maintenance of land records, survey for revenue purposes and records of rights, and alienation of revenues.
So, the land and its management fall in the exclusive domain of the States. Each State has a different set up for land and land records management. In most of the States Revenue Department handles the land records along with the other issues related to land management. Survey Department deals with the survey of lands, Consolidation Department deals with the consolidation of lands, and Gram Panchayats do undisputed mutations in some States. The change of the land records by any one of them makes the records of another obsolete. So, the records are out of date in most of the States and they do not reflect the ground reality.
Before independence, the revenue from the lands was a major consideration for the proper management of land and land records. But after independence as revenue from the lands dwindled, the land and land records management was also neglected. In fact in some of the States the land revenue has been abolished altogether. The surprising fact is that the States hardly give nay priority to this subject and most of the initiatives have been taken from the Central Level.